Volume 5, Issue 1
  • ISSN 2405-5522
  • E-ISSN: 2405-5530
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While second language (L2) pragmatics research has predominantly investigated speech acts, little attention has been given to pragmatic markers (PMs) (Müller, 2005). Research demonstrates that PM use by learners is limited (Liao, 2009) and that their production is aided by native speaker (NS) contact (Sankoff et al., 1997). Thus, if study abroad (SA) provides a combination of instructed and naturalistic input / exposure, the analysis of PM development gives insights into the role of language exposure during SA. Against this background, this article investigates the use of PMs in L2 English during an Erasmus programme in Ireland. Data were collected using sociolinguistic interviews (Labov, 1984) and the PMs studied were ‘like’ and ‘well’. These PMs were tracked longitudinally to investigate differences in frequency and use. Findings were analysed quantitatively and compared with English NSs. Results point to an increase in frequency but also reveal constraints on the use of the PMs studied.


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